We may be already planning next year’s annual meeting, but there is still much to share from DEAM13! Our presenters provided best practices and unique insight into a number of topics relevant to our attendees through general sessions and tracks, which were broken down by topic. The technology track focused on innovation with online recruitment, data standards, product development at DirectEmployers and global trends. Take a look at some of the technology track highlights throughout the conference.


The track kicked off with a panel featuring technology award recipients from our inaugural Member awards competition including: Bonnie Elliott & Daniel Magpali of REI, Anthony Scarpino of Sodexo, and Kristina Arnold of Eaton. Each person discussed their award-winning initiatives, took questions from the audience and received their crystal awards.

Key Takeaways:

  • Companies don’t need big budgets to create award-winning programs.
  • Improving the user interface and mobile accessibility of your career site can significantly improve many metrics including website traffic, quantity of applicants and employee referrals.
  • Members should consider participating in the next Member Awards Competition. Details will be released at DEAM14.

A Product Development Update was next. Rick Wehrle, Kyle Totten, Mike Seidle, and Jason Sole from the DirectEmployers team shared this year’s many new innovations and product features, including Unicode, markdown, and the implementation of GitHub open source software. During this presentation, attendees were introduced to My.jobs, a place for employers and job seekers to connect in a secure and trusted environment. This platform, soon to be the new hub of the .JOBS Universe, gives employers more insight into the job seekers interacting with their jobs. In addition, updates to state job bank compliance reports were detailed, adding further benefit for federal contractors

Key Takeaways:
Members can help and be more involved in our product development by:

  • Asking or telling your technology team about HR-XML standards.
  • Joining My.jobs and become a beta tester for employer accounts.
  • Contributing to the DirectEmployers Foundation.

From sharing job descriptions with co-workers to storing candidate resumes, it’s likely that Google has an app for that. In the next session, Enterprise Sales Engineer of Google, Tejas Saraiya, presented innovative ways of implementing Google Apps and other products such as Google Drive, into human resources and recruiting activities.

Key Takeaway:

  • Google Apps can simplify communication and improve collaboration with team members.


In the first technology session of day two, Mike Seidle of DirectEmployers and Eric Shepherd of Questionmark explained the goal and key initiatives of HR-XML, in addition to how you can help make these standards commonplace in the HR industry to “future-proof” your technology investment. After all, wouldn’t it be easier if we all did things the same way?

Key Takeaways:

  • HR-XML is a global standard for HR interoperability that has been around for 14 years. It is designed by some of the best HR technologists in the world.
  • HR-XML helps deal with many incompatibilities that we run into every day.
  • Without HR technology standards we are doomed to re-invent the wheel over and over.
  • HR-XML can be reused, so integrating with multiple vendors is easy.

Did you know that 95% of job seekers use the internet to search for careers? Bjorn Wigeman of Potentialpark Communications traveled all the way from Sweden to share insight into job seeker habits and show employers what they should be doing to attract quality candidates to their open positions. Chock full of relevant statistics, his presentation was both informative and entertaining.

Key Takeaways:

  • 90% of survey respondents say honesty is essential when a company interact with job seekers on a Facebook careers page.
  • Think in terms of cross-platform, not just many platforms.
  • Do one thing right rather than everything poorly.

The final technology track session was a panel discussion moderated by Marilyn Mackes of the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). Panel members Manny Contomanolis of Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), Trudy Steinfeld of New York University (NYU), Nicole Fritz of KPMG, and Nicole Wagner of Enterprise took questions regarding best practices in the recruitment of interns and college graduates. While fielding questions from Marilyn and the audience, they had some great advice regarding the implementation of social media and use of college career centers for attracting top talent.

Key Takeaways:

  • 56% of HR professionals use social networking websites to source potential candidates.
  • 14.4 million people used social media last year to find a new job.
  • See more statistics in the video Marilyn shared.

Thanks again to all of the technology track presenters! We are confident that our attendees walked away with actionable tips and advice to apply upon returning to work. Want to review the presentation slides from these sessions, or from other tracks? Download them from our exclusive, Member-only online community, Pipeline. We also encourage those interested in presenting at DEAM14 to submit a speaker proposal for consideration.

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